program

FILMS

The Shadow of the Desert

Umbra deșertului

74 films in 13 categories
Juan Manuel Sepúlveda
Mexico
81'


2020

Original Title

La sombra del desierto

CATEGORY

INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION

synopsis

The border between Mexico and the United States has been a hot political and media topic of the last few years, following former American president Donald Trump’s increasingly incisive and controversial attempts to block the illegal entry of thousands of immigrants coming from all around Latin America, carried by the hope that on the other side, in the land of all possibilities, they will be able to start a new, better life. These travelers are at the forefront of Mexican filmmaker Juan Manuel Sepúlveda’s movie, as they are shown in different instances along their extremely dangerous and difficult journey, who, before running into the well-equipped and well-prepared armed forces from the border, have to confront another, much more unpredictable enemy, the arid and seductive desert. The documentary actually presents it in its true grandeur, that of a monster full of contradictions, capable of making the bodies of the unfortunate ones who either fall prey to armed attacks committed by gangs, or die of thirst and hunger and disappear without a trace, their bones ending up, - best case scenario -, as props in the innocent games played by the children from the local families. Yet it also captures its fascinating parts, like its sunrises and its sunsets of bewildering beauty, perfectly suited for losing the one who is already lost and for luring them into various traps without return. In short, “The Shadow of the Desert” is one of the most captivating and complex depictions of the greatness of a space which brought the salvation they long dreamed of to some, while it brought the end to many others, but not until offering them a mesmerizing show, an ephemeral snippet of their abruptly interrupted lives. (by Andrei Rus)

awards and festivals

Cinema du Réel 2020

FICUNAM Festival International de Cine UNAM 2020

POSTER

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